[GRG] “In body” muscle regeneration demonstrated in rodents

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Contact: Karen Richardson
krchrdsn@wakehealth.edu
336-716-4453
Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center
Research in rodents suggests potential for ‘in body’ muscle
regeneration
Winston-Salem, N.C. – Sept. 2, 2014 – What if repairing large
segments of damaged muscle tissue was as simple as mobilizing the
body’s stem cells to the site of the injury? New research in mice
and rats, conducted at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center’s
Institute for Regenerative Medicine, suggests that “in body”
regeneration of muscle tissue might be possible by harnessing the
body’s natural healing powers.
Reporting online ahead of print in the journal Acta Biomaterialia,
the research team demonstrated the ability to recruit stem cells
that can form muscle tissue to a small piece of biomaterial, or
scaffold that had been implanted in the animals’ leg muscle. The
secret to success was using proteins involved in cell communication
and muscle formation to mobilize the cells.
“Working to leverage the body’s own regenerative properties, we
designed a muscle-specific scaffolding system that can actively
participate in functional tissue regeneration,” said Sang Jin Lee,
Ph.D., assistant professor of regenerative medicine and senior
author. “This is a proof-of-concept study that we hope can one day
be applied to human patients.”
The current treatment for restoring function when large segments of
muscle are injured or removed during tumor surgery is to surgically
move a segment of muscle from one part of the body to another. Of
course, this reduces function at the donor site.
Several scientific teams are currently working to engineer
replacement muscle in the lab by taking small biopsies of muscle
tissue, expanding the cells in the lab, and placing them on
scaffolds for later implantation. This approach requires a biopsy
and the challenge of standardizing the cells.
“Our aim was to bypass the challenges of both of these techniques
and to demonstrate the mobilization of muscle cells to a target-
specific site for muscle regeneration,” said Lee.
Most tissues in the body contain tissue-specific stem cells that
are believed to be the “regenerative machinery” responsible for
tissue maintenance. It was these cells, known as satellite or
progenitor cells, that the scientists wanted to mobilize.
First, the Wake Forest Baptist scientists investigated whether
muscle progenitor cells could be mobilized into an implanted
scaffold, which basically serves as a “home” for the cells to grow
and develop. Scaffolds were implanted in the lower leg muscle of
rats and retrieved for examination after several weeks.
Lab testing revealed that the scaffolds contained muscle satellite
cells as well as stem cells that could be differentiated into
muscle cells in the lab. In addition, the scaffold had developed a
network of blood vessels, with mature vessels forming four weeks
after implantation.
Next, the scientists tested the effects of several proteins known
to be involved in muscle formation by designing the scaffolds to
release these proteins. The protein with the greatest effect on
cell recruitment was insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1).
After several weeks of implantation, lab testing showed that the
scaffolds with IGF-1 had up to four times the number of cells than
the plain scaffolds and also had increased formation of muscle
fibers.
“The protein effectively promoted cell recruitment and accelerated
muscle regeneration,” said Lee.
Next, the scientists will evaluate whether the regenerated muscle
is able to restore function and will test clinical feasibility in a
large animal model.
###
The research was supported by the Armed Forces Institute of
Regenerative Medicine, a federally funded effort to apply
regenerative medicine to battlefield injuries.
Co-researchers were: Young Min Ju, Ph.D., lead author, Anthony
Atala, M.D., and James J. Yoo, M.D., Ph.D., all with the Institute
for Regenerative Medicine.
Media Contacts: Karen Richardson, krchrdsn@wakehealth.edu, (336)
716-4453) or Main Number (336) 716-4587.

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About Johnny Adams

My full-time commitment is to slow and ultimately reverse age related functional decline to increase healthy years of life. I’ve been active in this area since the 1970s, steadily building skills and accomplishments. I have a good basic understanding of the science of aging, and have many skills that complement those of scientists so they can focus on science to advance our shared mission. Broad experience Top skills: administration, management, information technology (data and programming), communications, writing, marketing, market research and analysis, public speaking, forging ethical win-win outcomes among stakeholders (i.e. high level "selling"). Knowledge in grant writing, fundraising, finance. Like most skilled professionals, I’m best described as a guy who defines an end point, then figures out how to get there. I enjoy the conception, design, execution and successful completion of a grand plan. Executive Director Gerontology Research Group (GRG). Manages Email discussion forum, web site, meetings and oversees supercentenarian (oldest humans, 110+ years) research. CEO / Executive Director Carl I. Bourhenne Medical Research Foundation (Aging Intervention Foundation), an IRS approved 501(c)(3) nonprofit. http://www.AgingIntervention.org Early contributor to Supercentenarian Research Foundation. Co-Founder Geroscience Healthspan Forum. Active contributor to numerous initiatives to increase healthy years of life. Co-authored book on conventional, practical methods available today to slow the processes of aging – nutrition, exercise, behavior modification and motivation, stress reduction, proper supplementation, damage caused by improper programs, risk reduction and others. Fundamental understanding of, and experience in the genomics of longevity (internship analyzing and curating longevity gene papers). Biological and technical includes information technology, software development and computer programming, bioinformatics and protein informatics, online education, training programs, regulatory, clinical trials software, medical devices (CAT scanners and related), hospital electrical equipment testing program. Interpersonal skills – good communication, honest, well liked, works well in teams or alone. Real world experience collaborating in interdisciplinary teams in fast paced organizations. Uses technology to advance our shared mission. Education: MBA 1985 University of Southern California -- Deans List, Albert Quon Community Service Award (for volunteering with the American Longevity Association and helping an elderly lady every other week), George S. May Scholarship, CA State Fellowship. BA psychology, psychobiology emphasis 1983 California State University Fullerton Physiological courses as well as core courses (developmental, abnormal etc). UCLA Psychobiology 1978, one brief but fast moving and fulfilling quarter. Main interest was the electrochemical basis of consciousness. Also seminars at the NeuroPsychiatric Institute. Other: Ongoing conferences, meetings and continuing education. Aging, computer software and information technology. Some molecular biology, biotech, bio and protein informatics, computer aided drug design, clinical medical devices, electronics, HIPAA, fundraising through the Assoc. of Fundraising Professionals. Previous careers include: Marketing Increasing skill set and successes in virtually all phases, with valuable experience in locating people and companies with the greatest need and interest in a product or service, and sitting across the table with decision makers and working out agreements favorable to all. Information Technology: Management, data analysis and programming in commercial and clinical trials systems, and bioinformatics and protein informatics. As IT Director at Newport Beach, CA based technology organization Success Family of Continuing Education Companies, provided online software solutions for insurance and financial professionals in small to Fortune 500 size companies. We were successful with lean team organization (the slower moving competition was unable to create similar software systems). Medical devices: At Omnimedical in Paramount CA developed and managed quality assurance dept. and training depts. for engineers, physicians and technicians. Designed hospital equipment testing program for hospital services division. In my early 20’s I was a musician, and studied psychology and music. Interned with the intention of becoming a music therapist. These experiences helped develop valuable skills used today to advance our shared mission of creating aging solutions.
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